Nokia – Oppo Patent Licensing Deal: Another Addition To Nokia’s Long List Of Licenses

Introduction

Recently in the last week of November 2018, the Finnish telecommunication giant Nokia announced inking a patent licensing agreement with Oppo. Oppo is a Chinese consumer electronics and mobile communication company which is popular for its smartphones. Oppo has been focusing  on producing the youth-based smartphones . Having been launched in 2004, Oppo has been riding high on the statistics recently, and became the leading smartphone manufacturer in China in 2016. [1] On the other hand, Nokia is a Finnish Company founded in 1865 headquartered in Espoo.  Nokia has had its operations in a lot of countries of the world and recently in 2014, the company stopped its manufacturing operations. However, as a result of the vast and diverse quantum of patents that it holds and the licensing that it has done to major communication providers of the world, it still gains significantly by way of royalty.

Way Till Now: Nokia’s Licensing Agreement With Other Companies

So far, Nokia has had patent licensing agreements with a lot of companies. With the current patent licensing deal, Oppo now sits alongside other manufacturers like Xiaomi, Samsung, and Huawei that have been using a significant part of Nokia’s Intellectual Property since the past few years. Nokia presently exists as a leading patent owner [2] of several communication standards such as 2G, 3G and even 4G.  The company has over a 100 licenses, most of the same being in the mobile phone market and includes a big chunk of major companies like Apple, Huawei, LG Electronics, Samsung and now Oppo.  Any company that wants to produce a device that work upto those standards shall have to take a license of Nokia’s patents.

The Deal With Oppo

With the present deal, Oppo now joins other companies like Apple, Xiaomi and Huawei who use the license by Nokia to produce their products. This usage is done in return of a payment called Royalty. This deal shall surely bring greater royalty to Nokia. The other relevant details pertaining to the deal are kept confidential. However, this deal does not mean that Oppo shall produce smartphones for Nokia as the agreement regarding the same is existing with HMD Global. The licensing has further strengthened Nokia’s global licensing program. [3]

Conclusion

One after the other, with companies coming and using the patents of Nokia, the company is eventually strengthening its global licensing program. Nokia has a very strong position in the global patent pool and the same is the reason why one after the other the telecommunication giants are buying its patents. Nokia has its Patent Licensing agreements signed with Apple, Samsung and LG Electronics already. It subsequently signed agreements with Huawei and Oppo in December 2017 and December 2018 respectively. It has already licensed its other products to companies like Microsoft and a lot of its licenses have already been extended beyond their initially set timelines. Nokia had spent huge sums on its Research and Development in the past two decades and the company now seeks to engage in a more aggressive policy [4] to license its patents to maximize returns from its investment. The significant number of companies coming and using Nokia’s Patents and the continuous royalty that it earns speaks volumes about the company’s strong position in the Global Patents pool.

Author: Kanay Pisal, Intern at Khurana & Khurana, Advocates and IP Attorneys. In case of any queries please contact/write back to us at pratistha@khuranaandkhurana.com.

References:

[1] https://www.oppo.com/in/about-us/

[2]https://www.teleanalysis.com/news/international/nokia-oppo-sign-patent-license-agreement-29266

[3]https://www.gizchina.com/2018/11/26/oppo-and-nokia-signed-a-multi-year-patent-licensing-deal/

[4]https://nokiamob.net/2018/11/26/nokia-signs-patent-licensing-deal-with-chinas-oppo/

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